Monday, October 18, 2021

ICPC uncovers empowerment items meant for youths, women in Anambra

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or www.facebook.com/ibrahim.ramalana, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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The Independent Corruption Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, has said empowerment items meant for youths and women in Oyi/Anayamelum Federal Constituency have yet to be distributed, two years after.

The ICPC, which made the discovery during the ongoing Constituency and Executive Projects Tracking Exercise in the state, said they have it on good authority that the items were stored in a warehouse belonging to the lawmaker.

The items, which were bought in 2019 and 2020, included grinding machines, sewing machines, driers, clippers, among others.

The ICPC officials, who visited the constituency for checks with the listed beneficiaries, disclosed that they had not received the items and all efforts to access the warehouse were frustrated by the lawmaker’s agents.

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The officers, who pleaded anonymity, said they were denied access to the warehouse after three attempts due to the reluctance on the part of the lawmaker`s team to take them to the facility.

“We have the list of the intended beneficiaries but those we called said they did not receive the items,” the source said.

The ICPC team also said nobody was around to show them the evidence of the rural electrification project awarded through PRODA.

In Ogbaru Federal Constituency, the anti-graft agents said they were able to verify installed and functional solar-powered streetlights in Okpoko and Umunankwo.

In Orumba North and South, the ICPC officials also verified the donation of an18 seater-bus to a community in Akpu as approved for the lawmaker in 2019.

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In the Anambra North Senatorial Zone, the ICPC officials were able to interact with some market women who got training and a start-up capital of N80,000 each.

The women attested that the money helped them to expand their various businesses which yielded income for their families.

Still in Anambra North, the ICPC officials confirmed that some youth were trained on ICT and got N20,000 each as transport fare.

Only one of the beneficiaries said he got a computer set and a printer, while none of the 22 trainees was paid the N120,000 that was approved in the bill of quantity.

Tricycles were said to have been distributed to youths but the ICPC officials said no single beneficiary could be produced as evidence of having executed the project.

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The ICPC is currently on the third phase of the tracking exercise in which18 states will be covered.

Azuka Ogugua, the commission’s spokesperson, said in a statement that a total of 1,251 projects, comprising 1,024 constituency and 227 executive projects executed under the 2019 and 2020 appropriations, had been listed for tracking.

NAN

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